Adam Carroll is one of the most respected singer-songwriters in the Texas scene. He's a songwriter's songwriter, known for his in-depth songs filled with vivid imagery. But 20 years ago, Carroll was a struggling lyricist just looking for a place to share his music. Like many songwriters over the years, Carroll found a champion in Kent Finlay, the longtime owner and operator of Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, Texas.
Finlay helped launch George Strait's career and served as a mentor to songwriters from Todd Snider to Randy Rogers with his weekly Songwriters Circle.
Carroll's song "Night at the Show," which Wide Open Country is premiering today, celebrates the legacy of the songwriting guru who passed away in 2015. In the song, Carroll remembers Finlay as many do: as a friend to songwriters who could almost always be found at his regular spot at the bar, taking in the music.
"Did you want more than you let on? Did you ever get to write your final song?" Carroll sings. "Did you get back everything you gave? Did you keep something for yourself or was there nothin' left to save?"
Carroll says he wrote "Night at the Show" as a tribute to his mentor and friend.
"Kent gave me a place to play at Cheatham Street on a regular basis, whether I had a crowd or not. (Most of the time I did not). Kent was a rock for so many people in the music community of the Texas Hill Country," Carroll tells Wide Open Country. "Kent dedicated his life to music. He loved songwriters, and he was a good friend. I consider myself lucky to have know him, and I miss him... more than I can put into words."
Listen to "Night At the Show" below.
"Night at the Show" is included on Carroll's forthcoming album I Walked in Them Shoes (out on April 12). For more information on Adam Carroll, visit his official website.